Urban Renewal and Unrest: Race, Riots, and Democracy


ACLS Fellowship Program


Public Administration and Policy


This project looks at the complex dynamics undergirding the riots in the urban United States in the 2010s. It takes a historical approach and compares the circumstances of the 1940s and 1950s to those in the 1990s and 2000s to explain how increased expectations among African Americans, widening income inequality, urban renewal policies, gentrification, and demographic and economic shifts, in addition to aggressive police actions, collectively account for modern riots in Baltimore, Ferguson, and Charlotte. This book is one of the first manuscripts to rigorously compare and contrast these urban renewal periods and show how this history of urban renewal, combined with contemporary policies, have contributed to conditions that sparked social unrest in the contemporary metropolitan United States.